Apple in Your Eye
This morning’s release of the iPad Mini saw crowds completely forgetting about the hurricane and lining up to score themselves a miniaturized version of their favorite fancy tablet. Apple beat reporter Philip Elmer-DeWitt was covering the release for Fortune/CNN Money. His online bio says that he’s been covering Apple for the last 30 years. He described the scene as such:
“Judging from the ethnic makeup of the queue in front of the big glass cube of Apple’s (AAPL) Fifth Avenue store, however, most of the customers who made the pilgrimage were coming from the environs of Chinatown.
Apple hasn’t yet said when the iPad mini will be available in mainland China, so there’s likely to be a market there for units shipped from the U.S.”
Since Mr. DeWitt didn’t cite a source supporting his Chinatown claim, it seemed like an . . . odd assumption.
Facebook Fiasco Claims Another Scalp Remember that time Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein kept the name of their Watergate informant a secret for decades, thereby providing generations of teenagers an excuse to say “deep throat” in high school classrooms? Good thing no one had email at the time!
According to Business Insider, Citigroup tech analyst Mark Mahaney was recently given the boot. Turns out that one of Mr. Mahaney’s underlings was getting a little too comfy with the press. Looking into the Facebook IPO, Massachusetts investigators stumbled across an email from a junior analyst to two TechCrunch reporters that read, in part, “I am ramping up coverage on FB and thought you guys might like to see how the street is thinking about it (and our estimates).”
Minority Report is a guest column by Sarah Kunst, who does business development and product at fashion app Kaleidoscope. She’s a black, non-engineer female in tech, but plans to IPO anyway.
Fortune magazine’s annual Brainstorm Tech summit is the Lincoln of conferences (the motor company is also a sponsor so kudos to them for nailing their demographic). Not the too-rich-for-its-own-good Bentley like Davos or the flashy Porsche that is TED. Rather, Brainstorm Tech brought together a lot of guys from Ivy League schools who work for companies with giant market caps and little buzz. They’re there to listen, network, and cut deals in one of the many hospitality tents at the Aspen Institute.
The listening part was easy as the speakers were relevant and quippy. Peter Thiel and Eric Schmidt went all Hunger Games for the crowd, trading blows on stage during dinner in what felt more like a sporting match than a debate about the future of technology. (You’ll have to excuse me if you already heard about their exploits, it takes a girl awhile to adjust back down to sea level.)
Sex and the Valley
The gender discrimination suit filed by Kleiner Perkins partner Ellen Pao against her employer has hit a potential snag. The hedge fund run by Ms. Pao’s husband, Alphonse “Buddy” Fletcher, has filed for bankruptcy, according to Dan Primack at Fortune.
Mr. Primack points out that while the bankruptcy and the suit could easily be unrelated, the possibility of family financial disaster could provide a motive for Ms. Pao seeking damages against the company.